African-American participation in baseball, at any level, is a deeply personal subject for me. Growing up, I was usually the only black player on the team. I had great teammates, but I always wondered why more blacks didn’t play America’s Pastime; I also wonder, as the percentage continues to decline, whether or not anything can be done to reverse the trend.
Howard Bryant, Senior Writer for ESPN & author of books such as The Last Hero: A Life of Henry Aaron and Shut Out: A Story of Race and Baseball in Boston, is my guest today to discuss some of the theories I have about African-American participation in the sport. He offers insight into what changes can be made to stimulate growth in the African-American (and global) community, shares stories of his dealings with league and team executives regarding the subject, why efforts to date have lacked the desired outcome, what changes he would tackle first as commissioner, and much more. (Run Time: 46 minutes)
Howard Bryant can be found on Twitter @hbryant42. Howard’s writing can be found on ESPN.com and ESPN The Magazine. Howard Bryant has written a number of books that can be found on his website www.howardbryant.net. You can catch all episodes of the Because of Sports Podcast on iTunes and Stitcher. Be sure to subscribe, rate, and review the podcast on iTunes and follow the show’s host on Instagram (@adamcubbage) or Twitter (@dacubbage).